From Terminator to I, Robot, humanoid robots have been gracing our movie screens over the years. Now they are coming off the big screen and into our day to day lives in hospitals, shopping malls and even within airports.
What ideas do you have for the robot in an airport environment?
What is the current stage of having Ameca within an airport environment?
Do you think that there is an increasing acceptance and understanding of robots?
How does nonverbal communication come into the robot’s design?
Engineered Arts is in the business of making robots that look as much like humans as is possible. To that end, they have been creating a series of robots with ever more life-like expressions. Its previous models were called Mesmer and RoboThespian—robots that were able to demonstrate a wide range of emotions. They were also painted with colors meant to mimic human skin and hair. The UK’s leading designer and manufacturer of humanoid robots, Engineered Arts, have developed numerous robots for entertainment purposes, attracting crowds, showcasing presentations and much more. Last year they showcased something very special.
shows off new level of human-like facial expressions
Developed by the company, Ameca is the world’s
first most advanced humanoid robot designed specifically as a platform for development of robotics based around human to robot interaction. By using a combination of artificial intelligence, machine learning and the company’s Tritum robot operating system, the robot’s behaviour can be changed, added, and chopped as new situations are tested. The artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies found within Ameca’s mechanical mind are modular, meaning that it can be easily upgraded. Ameca’s head is also in the clouds (literally), with cloud connected focus meaning the company can access all the robotic data, and control and animate it from anywhere in the world.
Frankie Youd speaks to founder and director,
Frankie Youd (FY):
Could you provide me with some background on the company?
Will Jackson (WJ):
Will Jackson (WJ): The company was founded in 2005. We’ve always made robots for public spaces. A big market section for us was science education: science museums, visitor attractions, that kind of thing. We also have supplied into universities as a research platform.
Robots are always a kind of one-to-many proposition
Robots are always a kind of one-to-many proposition, a robot is an expensive thing. If you think about a car factory or something like that, you’ll have one production line robot that will make hundreds of thousands or millions of cars – so you can justify the cost of that expensive piece of equipment. Think about humanoid robot. What is the main reason for a humanoid robot? Why would you even make one? Why would you make it that shape? There’s really nice illustration I always think about in the first Star Wars film: you have R2-D2 AND C-3PO, they are put into terms that everyone can understand. C-3P0 is the humanoid,
multicoloured robot that most people don’t want.